More story details have now been released on the return of the Third Doctor, Jo Grant, Liz Shaw and the Brigadier in Volume 5 of The Third Doctor Adventures. Out for release in May we’ll be re-encountering the Primords from the classic TV episode Inferno, and there’s a mysterious invader in the second story…
Tim Treloar returns as the Third Doctor this May along with Katy Manning back as Jo Grant, plus two very extra special guests. Jon Culshaw is playing Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart and Daisy Ashford joins the cast as Liz Shaw, taking on the role her mother originally played in the seventies.
5.1 Primord by John Dorney
Prisoners are escaping from incarceration all around the country and UNIT have been called in to aid in the search. But the Doctor is unwilling to agree to the Brigadier’s request for help as he and Jo have opted to take a holiday – they’re going to visit his old assistant Liz Shaw, now working in Cambridge University.
But, unfortunately for Jo, the Doctor can’t relax for very long. Soon the Time Lord and his friends are facing an old enemy – creatures they’d long since thought they’d put to ground.
The Primords have returned – and this time the danger may strike very close to home.
5.2 The Scream of Ghosts by Guy Adams
When the Brigadier and Jo are called in to look into a breakthrough in the field of portable communication, the Doctor has to stay behind with communications problems of his own – a strange signal coming through the TARDIS console that’s burned out its circuits.
When Benton approaches the Doctor with an odd story about an old friend, the Time Lord realises his troubles and the Brigadier’s investigations may be connected, and hot-foots it in pursuit.
Soon they discover that terrifying sounds are walking in the woods of the English countryside... but what lurks behind those sounds may be even more dangerous...
Primord writer, John Dorney, tells us about the pressures of writing a sequel to the classic Third Doctor story Inferno: “So here’s a question. In Doctor Who terms... what is a sequel? It’s not as straightforward as it might appear! Is Dalek Invasion of Earth a sequel to The Daleks? Or is it just another story with the Daleks?
“For a long time, I didn’t really feel I’d done any sequels for Big Finish. I’d played with pre-existing concepts like The Celestial Toymaker and Drax, but very few outright sequels.
“You see, to me, a sequel follows the same threads, ties the stories together. A sequel should do more than just feature the same characters. It should do the same thing... but differently. My first was probably The Perfect Prisoners. Primord is definitely my second.
“It’s awfully intimidating doing a sequel to Inferno. I remember finding that story a mind-blowingly good watch when I first encountered it as a young fan back in the 1990s. How do you honour a story like that? Whenever people have floated the idea of a sequel it’s always the alternative universe aspect, and not its featured monsters. (As I was writing this, someone on the Not Big Finish forum said it’d be impossible to bring the Primords back. I laughed, then cried...). They’re under-explored, often ignored. So if we’re looking for the same but different, that seemed a good place to go. What makes a Primord tick? And what happens when you don’t have another universe to escape to?”
And writer Guy Adams gives us some cryptic clues as to what the Third Doctor will be facing in The Scream of Ghosts: “Hauntology, that’s the thing. The notion of timelessness and paradox that results from evoking the past in a piece of new art. Is it nostalgia when it’s new?
“I’m a fan of electronica – as all ears born to the sounds of the Radiophonic Workshop should be, and the principles of hauntology (or, at least, the playful notion of it) has seen a distinct rise in new music digging up old, electronic bones. (For those of you fancying a taste, exploring the output of record label Ghost Box Records would be a good place to start – a huge sample of their work is on Spotify. As would a viewing of Berberian Sound Studio – Peter Strickland’s masterful movie of sonic terror with a soundtrack by Broadcast.)
“In attempting an act of hauntology myself – the day job, often – I wanted to explore that world. So we have electronica, haunted waveforms and the pastoral evoked as a crunching, electronic place of horror. We also have a villain played by the author, forced to perform his own expositional dialogue. This is possibly the greatest, most shameful lesson I’ve ever had as a writer, I recommend it wholeheartedly. All you need is a microphone and a room of actors looking at you with no sympathy whatsoever!”
Doctor Who: The Third Doctor Adventures Volume Five will be released in May 2019 and is available for pre-order now at £25 on CD and £20 on download.